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SGR Fix Gets Cool Industry Reception

Jeff Elliott, for HealthLeaders Media, November 18, 2010

If enacted, IPAB would have the authority to impose federal cuts in hospital pay for patients covered by Medicare and Medicaid; raise the IPAB's savings target to 1.5% instead of 0.5% in 2015; impose payment reductions even when Medicare spending does not exceed price index growth rate; and eliminate the trigger that could de-activate IPAB by 2019.

But perhaps the most damaging changes for the industry is the proposal to accelerate the payment cuts to disproportionate share hospitals, home healthcare and Medicare Advantage plans, which is expected to save about $9 billion. "Our members are already planning for cuts in Medicare payments from health reform and the continued shift to a value-based payment system from a volume-based one," Gundling noted. "The shortened timetable will make it even more difficult to adapt to the changes."

While this ambitious proposal would institute significant industry changes, it's not yet at the forefront of many provider minds. Rather, an immediate fix to the looming SGR cuts is generally their top concern, according to Anders Gilberg, vice president of public and private economic affairs with the Medical Group Management Association. Further, Gilberg noted that as only a draft recommendation, it has a long way to go before it would be voted on by Congress.

- Cheryl Clark contributed to this report.

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4 comments on "SGR Fix Gets Cool Industry Reception"


Jo Matthews (11/19/2010 at 8:21 AM)
Well lets be specific, I am a physician and I work in large group and while we value providing care, if the cuts go into place we wont meet over head so if I dont see the medicare patients I actually am ahead; in fact if they do make the cuts thats our plan. So those cancer patients and others will have to go another 100 miles , and that is IF the guy over there decided to keep taking medicare.. As far as the arguments of caring..I ve already cured more cancer and brought happiness into more lives than any wall street banker and I work 120 a week so please spare me the guilt trips!

shane (11/18/2010 at 7:27 PM)
Karl - you idiot. Cutting physician pay WILL cut services to medicare/medicaid recipients. Can you say reduced access?

Cris (11/18/2010 at 2:05 PM)
How about we fund the "doc fix" by taxing the insane bonuses Wall Street bankers are giving themselves using the taxpayer money we gave them to bail them out! Why should physicians get a 25% cut while bankers get 7 figure bonuses??